Urban Oasis - bringing the city to life
The Urban Oasis show feature is a realistic display of how the city landscape can be dramatically changed with a little community TLC
The power of community gardening is the inspiration behind the centrepiece of the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show this year, bringing to life the many ways inner-city gardeners come together to transform neighbourhoods.
See a picture gallery of all community areas of Urban Oasis.
Urban Oasis, created by environmental charities the RHS and Groundwork, and sponsored by Marks & Spencer, guides visitors through eight very different urban green spaces. Each demonstrates the extraordinary impact when inner-city neighbours get together to turn wasteland into gardens through community projects and schemes such as RHS Britain in Bloom and It's Your Neighbourhood.
Garden designer Chris Beardshaw on the Urban Oasis show feature
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Mature trees loaned by Majestic Trees such as birches, aspens, sweet chestnuts and hazels give the space a sense of permanence and height as well as effective habitats for urban wildlife. Plants grown and trained in different ways show how neglected spaces can be transformed into inspiring and exciting community havens.
Designer and broadcaster Chris Beardshaw worked with groups around the country to recreate real projects turning unlikely pockets of land into food gardens, play areas and community orchards. After the show, the gardens will be relocated to communities in need of urban green space in London, Birmingham, Ellesmere Port and Merthyr Tydfil.
Areas within the Urban Oasis
- Shipping Container turns an industrial cast-off into a community pavilion with a green roof and wildlife-friendly planting. See how the planting on the roof reflects the planting at ground level, giving a sense of coherence.
- Woodland Garden weaves a log-edged path through reed beds and a dipping pond to make a treasured community space in neglected woodland. Moisture-loving plants grow beneath tall aspens, field maples and and birch trees providing great woodland and wetland habitats.
- Derelict Space shows the blight of bleak, litterstrewn wastelands. A vandalised car is the dramatic centrepiece to the depressing space. They're often no-go zones due to antisocial behaviour, but urban greening can transform them.
- Gated Alleyway fills a typical back alley with different containers of colourful flowers, giving children somewhere safe to play and letting adults exercise their green fingers.
- Environment Garden brings nature into the city with bird boxes, log piles, insect hotels and a wildlife pool.
- Community Allotment is bursting with productivity: there's a greenhouse, herb gardens and trained fruit for everyone to share.
- Community Garden transforms a patch of grass into a social hub for families with pretty planting, a sandpit and a paddling pool.
- Community Orchard recreates an unlikely orchard planted among high rise flats in London. Fruit trees soften concrete and meadows attract pollinating bees.